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If you’re from literal bumfuck nowhere (or if you’re just getting fucked in the bum in a smallish town) and are considering a move to the big city, then listen up! Within America right now, there are basically two distinct worlds--major metropolitan areas and all those sweet small towns that spangle our banner. And let’s face it, life in the country can be quite different than subleasing a 500 square foot studio in Chelsea. Especially if you’re gay. So, to help ease your transition. Here’s everything you need to know as a small town gay moving to a big city.

The biggest thing that will affect you directly as an innocent small town gay who’s just landed at LAX or JFK is, suddenly, your dating app lists more than one person within 50 miles of you. That’s right, with millions of people means thousands of gay people. Get ready for your options to be multiplied a hundredfold. Which means, get ready for world-class cliques as well. If you thought hate-fucking your one gay rival in Abilene, Kansas was complicated, just wait until six identical Nordic Gods in matching rainbow jockstraps confront you in the Manhattan Metro. Stranger things have happened in the big city.

Of course, the other downside of having thousands more faceless torsos to swipe through on a dating apps is that there’s just way too many people overall in big cities. If you’re used to taking your tractor to work under the open starry sky, get ready for a big twist. Your PR job is gonna be at least a 45 minute commute in bumper-to-bumper traffic, and if you opt to roll the windows down, then by the time you arrive you will have inhaled the equivalent of six cigarettes. Pollution, squalor, overpopulation--that’s pretty much par for the course these days in most major cities.

It’s not all bad though. Big cities have something to offer for everyone--and that applies to everything from specialty ethnic grocery stores to types of guys. As cross sections of the entire globe, big cities offer pretty much something for type of gay out there. Find your scene, and suddenly this megalopolis won’t seem so sprawling.

All that being said, there’s going to be a transitional period when you move from a small town to a big city. Just keep an open mind and don’t worry, you’ll make friends, you’ll adjust to the fast-paced way of life. Quickly, you’ll think of this big city as home. And then, like the rest of us, you’ll become a neurotic mess and fantasize about feeling of grass.

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